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Wearables change world of BYOx

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A while ago, BYOD was a hot topic, and although it mostly fallen off the radar, it is now being replaced with BYOx or Bring Your Own Anything. In particular, this is referring to wearable devices which need Internet access and bring some new issues to network administrators, says MARTIN WALSHAW.

There was a period a couple of years ago when it seemed that every other article you read mentioned Bring Your Own Device (BYOD). Now it seems to have largely fallen off the radar, replaced by Bring Your Own Anything (BYOx) and has become an accepted part of the IT landscape under the wider heading of ‘mobility’.

But this doesn’t mean that BYOD has gone away. Far from it. Even if it’s not the hot topic, all devices that want access to enterprise networks or applications need to be tracked and secured according to the policies that have been put in place – this has become standard practice for businesses. On the horizon though is a new wave of BYOD, coming in all shapes and sizes, with wearable tech.

As consumer tech businesses scramble to create the next big thing, there is no doubt that we’ll start to see these having an impact on corporate resources. Some of these devices will have more of an impact than others: a fitness tracking wearable might eat up a little bit of bandwidth on Wi-Fi but an interactive and immersive device (for example, Google Glass) that is demanding access to files and broader Internet connectivity may start to bump up against firewall and access control issues. With wearables predicted to be a huge growth market, it’s a matter of when, not if, this will happen.

Unlike BYOD though, we’re aware of the impending issues. While smartphones, tablets and the like were dismissed as something of a fad, most businesses have learned their lessons and are better prepared to react to developments. What’s more, the professional use cases are more easily recognised (think wearable cameras for the police or head-mounted displays for surgeons), meaning there will be a greater readiness in some quarters to adopt the technology.

This greater awareness and willingness to embrace wearable technology puts most businesses in a position to prepare themselves adequately for the changing ways in which employees will be using technology in years to come. And as forewarned is forearmed, there should be no excuse for businesses to be unprepared for the impact of the new wave of BYOD. Here are a few thoughts on how to prepare your business for wearable tech:

·         Make sure that your applications are protected – no matter what devices are connecting to the network; if you protect data at the application level you should be in good stead

·         Plan for an influx of devices and the impact they will have on capacity and bandwidth

·         If staff will be using wearables for business purposes, prepare guidance on the applications and acceptable use

·         It’s crucial that your company maintains control over who has access to your network and data. Understanding who is accessing, where from and on what device will allow this level of control

Technology and processes can support businesses through the changing flow of data brought on by wearable technology, but businesses must also remember the people factor, and to communicate any BYOD policy. This will ensure that employees and processes are aligned and that business data is accessed within company policy, regardless of the shift in end-user technology.

* Martin Walshaw, senior engineer at F5 Networks.

* Follow Gadget on Twitter on @GadgetZA

 

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Acer first with Optane

Acer Africa has announced that its new Swift 3 ultrabook will be the first device to market with Intel Optane Technology, a memory technology design which promises incomparable speed, density and non-volatility for faster processing.

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Acer has launched the Intel Optane Technology in its Swift 3 device to target users who want the performance of a very high-end laptop at an affordable price.

Being the first to market with this technology provides Acer with the opportunity to offer the consumer advanced processing capabilities for heavy workloads. The Swift 3 ultrabook, in an i5 and i7 (8th Generation) configuration, has been earmarked to enter the market with Optane as it is a stylish and luxurious device, made for the person looking for the best available in speed.

Intel Optane uses advanced artificial intelligence to make a computer faster without having to spend a fortune on a computer with a bigger memory chip or larger storage access.

It combines a next generational non-volatile memory called 3D XPOINT Memory, which eliminates the lag time an internal storage processor takes to administer large data sets. The simple and dense design enables Intel to deliver greater capacity than DRAM, a memory chip that relies on an applied voltage to keep stored data, in the same space.

Optane technology is especially useful for demanding workload environments, as it utilises low latency levels to boost memory performance, eliminating the performance penalty for each data request, making it suitable for most devices, applications and services. Optane Memory will also play a massive role in the move to Cloud Technology for businesses in the future.

The chip monitors what programs the user accesses and stores this information on the Optane memory chip. This allows for a device to run multiple programs at the same but at a faster pace with less lagging.

Traditionally, without Optane, users who were looking for better performance from their device would need to increase the memory in their PC. For example: They would need to upgrade from a 4GB D-RAM to 8GB D-RAM or change their storage from a slow Hard Disk Drive (HDD) to a much faster Solid State Drive (SDD). Both upgrade options would come at a huge cost. Intels’ Optane can now deliver speed on a notebook at an affordable price.

In combining the design of the Acer Swift 3 Ultrabook and the latest Core i5 and Core i7 8th Generation processors, while still including 16GB of Optane memory, Acer is hoping to expand the market by enticing consumers who are looking for optimal memory capacity on a budget.

The Acer i5 Optane 4GB D-Ram + 16GB Optane memory + 1TB HDD is available at Makro in a Silver aluminium finish, Blue and Rose Pink.

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Win a Poster Heater with Gadget and Takealot.com

This winter Gadget and Takealot.com are giving away three Poster Heaters, which look like posters but become heaters when you plug them in.

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Three Gadget readers will each win a unit, valued at R550 each. To enter, follow @GadgetZA and @Takealot on Twitter and tell us on the @GadgetZA account how many Watts the heater consumes.

What’s the big deal about these heaters? Many of us are struggling to keep the balance between soaring electricity costs and the need to keep warm this winter.

However, the recently launched Poster Heater by EasyHeat and distributed in South Africa by Takealot.com is not only one of the most cost effective electric heaters currently on the market, it is also easy to setup and use.

As the name indicates, it is a poster similar to one you would hang on a wall. But, plug it in and it turns into a 300 Watt heater. The Poster Heater isn’t designed to heat hallways or large rooms, but rather smaller ones like a bedroom or a baby’s nursery or a dressing room.

It uses radiant heating, which means that it heats up in a couple of minutes and the heat is directed at the objects or people around it, quickly taking the chill out of the air and providing a comfortable ambient temperature.

The other advantage of radiant heating is that it doesn’t dry out the air like infrared or gas heaters. Users also don’t have to worry about their children or pets getting too close to it because, even though it gets hot, it can be touched.

To enter the competition follow the steps below:

Competition entry details:

1. Follow @GadgetZA and @Takealot on Twitter. (We will ONLY be accepting entries via Twitter, so please don’t enter through the comments section of this article.)

2. Tell us on Twitter, via @GadgetZA, mentioning @Takealot in your posting, how many Watts the Poster Heater consumes.

cleardot.gif3. The competition closes on 31 July 2018.

4. Winners will be notified via Twitter on 1 August and Takealot.com will be in touch to organise delivery.

5. The competition is only open to South African residents.

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